Direct selling companies that rose to new heights in 2021

The conditions were constantly changing with success shifting gears. While the most skillful accelerated their pace, the lesser ones still maintained a steady rate. So much as it is true about the direct selling organizations, the changing macroeconomic landscape had little effect on them and they continued to grow as they were meant to be, at a much faster pace.

Nu Skin

The year 2021 extended a splendid welcome to Nu Skin with spiking growth rates in terms of revenue, sales, distributors, and customers. The first quarter of 2021 itself saw record-breaking revenue of $677 million. The company had a strong increase in its distributor base in the first quarter marking 60000 in number. Its customers crossed the 1.5 million mark. The company believes that the increase in numbers could be attributed to its innovative beauty and wellness product initiatives powered by its social commerce business model.

Nu Skin marked $704.1 and $641.2 million in revenue respectively for its second and third quarters of 2021. The company experienced remarkable growth in the U.S. and Korean markets despite a decline in Mainland China and Southeast Asia in the third quarter. Beauty Focus Collagen+ and ageLOC Meta were the most performance expected brands of 2021.

Nu Skin CEO Ryan Napierski in his New Year’s message shared the company’s anticipations for the year 2022. Highlighting the redefinition of its customer-centric approach through the company’s interactive, EmpowerME, Nu Skin commits to redefining its limits creating new opportunities to enhance customer experience.

Recognitions

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World’s #1 brand for beauty device systems by Euromonitor (4th consecutive year).

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ageLOC LumiSpa won "Product of the Year" in the BIG Awards for Business program.

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Listed as one of the top 300 female-friendly companies in 2021 by Forbes.

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Gold Globee Award for Products, Services, and Solutions for the USA.

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ageLOC Boost System won first place in the Technology category of the Marie France Grand Prix of Well-Being awards.

Coway

The net revenue of Coway in the first and the third quarter of 2021 stood the same at $780 million. The company dedicates its growth to the contributions made by its Malaysian and U.S. market and to its new products and marketing strategies.

The mid-quarter of 2021 saw Coway’s net revenue reach $760 million a slight decrease compared to its other two quarters. However, compared to the previous year the company experienced a 12.4% increase in revenue.

Recognitions

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Won "Good Design Award" for innovative product designs, the 15th consecutive year.

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Coway’s innovative technology and design were honored at the CES Innovation Awards 2021, the sixth time in a row.

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Honored with Bronze award for its refined innovation at the 2021 International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA).

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Chosen as an “Excellent Anti-Corruption Company” at the BIS Summit 2021 Anti-Corruption Awards.

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Honored at Business Integrity Society summit 2021 for its ESG standards and corporate transparency.

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Company of the Year award (Home appliances category) by CSR Malaysia.

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Honored with three awards for customer experience and satisfaction—CXP Best Customer Experience Award 2021, Trusted Brand Award 2021, and Asia Halal Brand Award 2021.

NewAge

Doubling its revenue compared to Q1 2020, NewAge Inc. achieved $125.5 million in net revenue in its first quarter of 2021. The company noted that its acquisition of ARIIX has definitely impacted the numbers. The company witnessed record growth in its Western Europe, Mexico, and the U.S. markets.

Quarterly analysis of NewAge

In the second quarter together with the acquisition of Aliven, NewAge reported $124 million in net revenue. While the third-quarter revenue of the company saw a slight drop compared to the previous two quarters, it showed a 59% increase totaling $100 million against its same quarter last year.

The company made commendable progress in implementing innovative social selling strategies and new growth programs for its global salesforce.

Recognitions

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Winner in the 2021 Viddy Awards for Social-Inspired Training Series.

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Launched a new app in partnership with Verb Technolgy for independent distributors to increase customer engagement and boost sales conversion rates.

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Recognized by Hermes Awards for its direct-to-consumer and social media marketing initiatives.

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Recognized as the "Top Revenue Generating Company" by DSN Global.

Tupperware

The net sales of Tupperware Brand Corporation in Q1, 2021 marked a 22% increase from the same quarter last year reaching $460.3 million. The second quarter saw net sales of $464.7 million. North American market stood as the strongest in both the quarters.

Quarterly analysis of Tupperware

In the third financial quarter, Tupperware received net sales of $376.9 million, an 11% decrease from the previous year. Excluding South America, all other Tupperware markets saw a decline in sales. The company attributed the 6% increase in net sales in South America to the improvements made to onboarding and training programs in the region. Along with the American markets, Tupperware made remarkable gains in the Asia Pacific and European markets too.

Recognitions

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One of America's Most Responsible Companies by Newsweek.

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Listed in Fast Company's first annual "Brands That Matter" list.

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Fast Company’s "Innovation by Design" Award.

Herbalife

In terms of net sales, Herbalife has maintained a consistent record across its three financial quarters in 2021. The first quarter of the year reported $1.5 billion net sales marking an 18.9% increase over the same period last year. The net sales in the second quarter reached $1.6 billion marking the largest quarterly net sales record in the company’s history. The net sales for the third financial quarter stood at $1.4 billion, a 6% decrease from the same quarter last year.

Recognitions

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Recognized as the "Most Honored Company" by Institutional Investor.

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Official nutrition partner for VIVO Pro-Kabaddi teams 2021-22.

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Ranked World's #1 Brand in Weight Management and Wellbeing by Euromonitor International Ltd.

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Rated A+ by Better Business Bureau.

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Receives Brandon Hall Group HCM gold award for the Best Advance in Mobile Learning Technology and Best Advance in Learning Management Technology for External Training.

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Honored with a silver award for The Best Use of Mobile Learning at eLearning Network's Learning Technologies Awards.

USANA

The first quarter of 2021 witnessed net sales of $308 million with the Asia-Pacific region leading the quarterly sales. Record-breaking second quarter saw net sales of $336.8 million and an active customer count of 652,000. Asia Pacific region did not stop being the leader in this quarter too. The company saw a decline in its third quarter net sales as compared to the previous two quarters. USANA reported $274.4 million in net sales for its third quarter of 2021.

Commenting on their leading Asia Pacific market Kevin Guest, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board, said, “Enhancing the overall shopping experience for our customers remains a high priority, and to that end, we rolled out additional features and functionality within our China shopping app, as well as a new web-based shopping cart in China.”

Recognitions

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Named as the official nutrition supplier of USA Skateboarding and official multivitamin of USA Swimming.

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Won four medals at Utah’s Best of State Awards.

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Won Gold award for excellence in the Live Events-Convention category at the American Business Stevie Awards (ABAs).

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USANA Philippines was honored for Corporate Excellence by Euromonitor International.

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Honored by Korea Medical Healthcare Awards and Global Health and Pharma (GHP) Excellence Awards for corporate excellence, executive achievement, and product quality.

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Won three prestigious awards at DSA 2021 Awards.

Primerica

The company reported net revenue of $637.7 million in the first quarter. With a 25% increased revenue compared to the same period last year, Primerica reported $654.7 million in net revenue for its second quarter. The third quarter of 2021 saw an increase in the net revenue marking $693.2 million.

Quarterly analysis of Primerica

“Primerica continues to adapt to the changing business environment and consumer sentiment. Our Investment and Savings business is experiencing strong growth as we meet clients’ desire to save for their futures. Client demand for life insurance protection is moving closer to pre-pandemic levels,” said Glenn Williams, Chief Executive Officer.

Recognitions

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Honored with sixth rank in the Forbes’ List of America’s Best Insurance Companies for 2022.

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Announced its acquisition of health insurance distributor e-Telequote.

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Selected for inclusion in the 2021 Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index (GEI).

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Listed in DSN Digital Momentum Index rankings.

Medifast

The parent company of Optavia, Medifast, declared a massive 90.9% increase in their revenue for the first quarter of 2021. The company reported net revenue of $340.7 million. The second quarter also witnessed an increase of 79.2% and the number of coaches increased to 59,200. In Reporting $413.4 million in the third quarter, the company saw 52.3% increase from the same quarter last year.

Quarterly analysis of Medifast

Commenting on a successful year of Medifast, Dan Chard, Chairman and CEO of Medifast said, “We are leveraging technology in new and effective ways to deliver these results, building digital products, channels and platforms that enable our Coaches to create deeper and more effective connections with their clients.”

Recognitions

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Recognized as "One of the Fastest-Growing Companies of 2021".

eXp World Holdings Inc.

The holding company for the direct selling company eXp Realty saw accelerated growth in the first quarter, only to witness increased growth rates in the succeeding quarters in 2021. Q1 reported a 115% increase in revenue against the same quarter last year. The company marked a revenue of $583.8 million and more than 50000 agents for the first quarter.

Quarterly analysis of eXp World Holdings

The second and third quarters marked $1 and $1.1 billion respectively. In the third quarter, the company expanded its operations across Panama and Germany.

Recognitions

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Named in Deloitte’s List of Fastest-Growing Companies in North America at the Deloitte Technology Fast 500 virtual awards celebration.

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Listed as the finalist for the 2021 Inman Golden I club.

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Honored as the 2021 HousingWire Insider and the 2021 HousingWire Vanguards.

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Listed in the 2021 Inc. 5000 rankings.

Industry awards and the awardees

Direct selling organizations and personalities, the world over, were honored for their outstanding commitment, innovation, and contribution in various fields with distinct awards and appreciations.

World Federation of Direct Selling Association (WFDSA) Awards

WFDSA announced its recognitions in unique categories for the year 2021. The awards are presented in light of the various contributions made in the respective fields which have made a remarkable impact on the direct selling industry.

Direct Selling Association, U.S.

The United States Direct Selling Association announced the winners of its 2021 awards in an event that marked the reunion of the organization—DSA Engage on the 2nd of November, 2021. The event also recognized and announced the list of 25 of its largest member companies.

The following are the award categories and awardees of DSA U.S. Awards 2021.

Direct Sellers Association, Canada

DSA, Canada, announced the winners of its 2021 Awards at its Awards Ceremony and Holiday Reception on December 2, 2021.

The award categories and awardees of DSA Canada are listed below.

Category Awardees
Ivan P. Phelan Award Tracie Kenzora, General Manager,
Canada, at USANA Health Sciences
Mark Of Distinction Award Kristen McBride, Mary Kay Cosmetics,
and Seta Der Artinian and Hubert Krause,
USANA Health Sciences
Community Spirit Award Courtney Waterfall, Stylist, She’s Got Leggz
Industry Innovation Award Mary Kay for Suite 13
Making A Difference Award Flourish Arbonne Foundation
Partnership In Progress Award PayQuicker
DSEF Circle Of Distinction Award Darren Sketchley, President, FORMCOR
Distinguished Service Award Lynda Rose, General Manager, Mary Kay Cosmetics

Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council

BBB National Programs won the International Council for Advertising Self-Regulation (ICAS) award for Best Sectoral Initiative for the Direct Selling Self-Regulatory Council (DSRRC).

DSA Hall of Fame Award

The Direct Selling Association Hall of Fame Award for the year 2021 was awarded to Scentsy’s Co-CEOs, Heidi and Orville Thompson, in note of the remarkable contributions they have made towards the advancement of the industry’s mission and cause.

Direct Selling News Global 100

The Direct Selling News Global celebration was held virtually on Monday, April 19, 2021. The event recognized the Global 100 List, Direct Selling Legends, Best Places to Work, and Bravo Awards for the year 2021.

Bravo awards are presented to individuals and companies who have exhibited an outstanding potential to contribute to the industry while carving up their way to success.

DSN Best Places to Work Award recognizes organizations that have prioritized the comfort and happiness of their workforce by providing them with the best workplace environment. The recognition comes as an honor to the positivity and inclusion exhibited by these organizations.

Best Places to Work Awards
Nu Skin Provo, Utah
Jeunesse Lake Mary, Florida
LifeVantage Sandy, Utah
Xyngular Lehi, Utah
Plexus Worldwide Scottsdale, Arizona
USANA Salt Lake City, Utah
MONAT Doral, Florida
Scentsy Meridian, Idahos
MODERE Springville, Utah
Noonday Collection Austin, Texas
SeneGence Foothill Ranch, California
The Happy Co. Plano, Texas
Neora Dallas, Texas

DSN celebrated the legends who made direct selling an invincible part of their life for more than 50 years. They were honored for their achievements, philanthropic efforts and support to the growing professionals in the industry.

Digital Momentum Index

The ranking system by Direct Selling News evaluates the omnichannel popularity of direct selling companies. The ratings are based on quarterly review of the companies’ social media and online performance.

The list below presents the top 10 domestic companies from the 2021 Digital Momentum Index rankings.

Optavia - Medifast
Scentsy
Colorstreet
Beachbody
Beautycounter
JAFRA
eXp Realty
Modere
Red Aspen
Jeunesse

The Achievers 2021

Just as any other year, 2021 saw companies awarding fine talents with promotions and accolades. Among the achievers, men and women shone alike in various capacities, all set up to transform the future in their dutiful positions.

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Emily Evangelista of Nu Skin Enterprises won the "Digital Transformation Leader Award" in the Women Tech Global Awards 2021.

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Stuart Kronauge, appointed as the CEO of Juice Plus+, has also earned the title of first women CEO in the company’s history.

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USANA board member Peggie Pelosi was named as the Most Influential Leader in The 2021 National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) Directorship 100 list.

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Mary Kay appointed Wendy Wang as the President of the company in the Asia Pacific region. She was previously working as the Chief Commercial Officer for Mary Kay in the Asia Pacific region.

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Herbalife announced Joe Miranda as its first-ever Chief Digital Officer with a view to transforming the company’s digital strategies and experiences of its customers, distributors, and employees across 95 markets.

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Miguel Pena took a new position in MONAT Global as the Director of Environment and Sustainability. He will be leading the company’s sustainability programs ranging from ingredient transparency to waste reduction initiatives.

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Dimitri Haloulos, who was previously working as the Chief Growth Officer was promoted to a new role as the Chief Executive Officer and President of Rodan + Fields.

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Connie Tang was commissioned as Executive Vice President and Chief Global Growth and Customer Experience Officer of Nu Skin. In this position, Connie will oversee the Company’s global markets and enhance customer and affiliate relationships.

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Samir Khandhar was selected as the Chief Digital Experience Officer for Arbonne. In his new role, Samir will monitor and enhance the digital innovations at Arbonne stressing the social commerce, merchandising, loyalty, CRM, and customer service programs of the company.

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Pamela Jones Harbour, former FTC Commissioner and a former Deputy Attorney General of the New York State Attorney General’s Office was appointed to the Board of Directors of Tupperware Brands.

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DSA conducted its Board of Directors elections for the year 2021. Kevin Guest, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board, USANA was elected as the Chairman to serve a 1-year term.

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Seldia, the direct selling association in the Europe, also conducted its Board elections for the year. Beatrice Nelson Beer from PM International was elected as the President along with the new Board of Directors to serve the organization in their elected roles from 2021 to 2024.

Industry research and interesting studies

Many organizations came forward with interesting insights on the course of the industry, reflecting on the lives and mindsets of people across the world. These studies and researches help the direct selling industry and the organizations analyze the changing mindset and trends in the market that create a greater impact on their businesses. These impartial studies are intended to provide actionable insights for businesses and demand great appreciation.

DSA Growth and Outlook Survey

The study by the U.S. Direct Selling Association predicted a 4-7% growth for the direct sales channel in 2021. On the basis of this forecast, the direct selling retail sales are expected to rise between $41.7 billion and $42.9 billion.

The DSA Growth and Outlook Study was published in line with the DSA research year-to-date (including annual Growth and Outlook, quarterly DataTracker, and monthly QuickPulse surveys), public company reporting, member growth expectations, and broader retail and labor market macroeconomic indicators/forecasts.

Search popularity of top direct selling brands

A recent research by EpixelEpixel MLM Software provides technology solutions to help MLM and direct selling companies to digitally transform into a customer-centric organization. analyzed the search popularity of the top 50 direct selling brands. Based on the data from Google Trends, the study uncovered interesting insights on the search popularity of direct selling brands around the world.

The study revealed the countries and international cities where the brands are most popular and their possible new markets. A curious factor that garnered attention however was that 88% of the companies were most popular outside their country of origin.

The Medifast study on consumer health priorities

Medifast, the parent organization for the direct selling brand OPTAVIA, conducted a study on the health priorities of U.S. adults. It revealed that 93% of U.S. adults have adopted health and wellness goals with 84% actively working to achieve them.

The study published some interesting findings in the way adults prioritize health during these trying times.

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76% of U.S. adults prioritize their health solely to enhance their physical and mental well-being.

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67% are motivated by the fact that having more energy helps reduce stress and anxiety.

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40% depend on healthcare providers for support.

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Men (46%) prioritize health and wellness rather than women (39%) to look better physically.

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While 78% of adults do not practice meditation or exercises, 46% resort to low-intensity workouts to achieve their wellness goals.

Young Living wellness survey

The survey conducted on 5000 adults across the world determined the wellness habits of consumers and the impact of COVID-19 in the changing attitudes of people on personal well-being. 48% of respondents are making wellness and self-care a top priority.

Some important finds the study revealed:

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57% focus more on their mental health since the pandemic began, 53% created new healthy habits during the pandemic, and 42% plan to set aside more time for personal wellness.

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Stress has become a common factor for consumers with 48% admitting that they feel stress daily.

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Consumers are developing new habits for their personal care during the pandemic.

  • Drinking coffee or tea (78%)
  • Going for walks (60%)
  • Connecting with people and pets (74%)
  • Using aromatherapy or essential oils weekly (20%)
  • Yoga (16%)
  • CBD products (12%)
  • Religious or worship activities (81% in the U.S.; 94% in the UK; 80% in Australia; 77% in Indonesia)

The state of customer onboarding

The survey conducted by Rocketlane, a collaborative customer onboarding company, uncovered the trends and gaps in the customer onboarding journey. The survey included onboarding professionals from companies including Microsoft, Intuit, and Pendo.

The study noted the inefficient and inconsistent process of customer onboarding that eventually results in a higher customer churn rate. 54% of professionals admit that the customer service they provide is average. The most inefficient elements of the customer onboarding process identified are

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Overdependence on project managers.

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The manual customer feedback method

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Usage of too many tools

The Shaklee U.S. health and wellness study

This new study by research firm One Poll for Shaklee revealed that 60% of the millennial generation are “more stressed out than ever before” with another 58% experiencing “permanently low energy levels”. The two factors that contribute to this state are pandemic (34%) and economic conditions (32%).

The study analyzed how and why people get stressed out underlining the importance of personal wellness during the pandemic and beyond.

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64% say “managing stress is the most difficult part of taking care of myself”.

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69% are interested in using supplements to manage their stress levels.

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83% have tried different options to improve their sleep.

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89% need to boost their energy during the day and rely on coffee, tea, or energy drinks.

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71% are concerned that their energy boosters come with a “health trade-off”.

Industry innovations and training programs

Success is led by innovation, today, tomorrow, and forever. It is these innovations that shape the success of direct selling brands despite the immense competition. Fairly enough, the organizations have kept pace with the changing trends through innovations that help them stand out.

Digital skin consultation platform

The personal recommendation platform of Nu Skin, Vera, helps customers find products that best suit their needs. The Vera app employs advanced algorithms to identify possible concerns through in-app interactions and makes personalized recommendations.

The EmpowerMe platform from Nu Skin is also aimed at enhancing its customer experience digitally. This technology initiative also provides its customers with the right devices and products for their skincare needs.

Compliance Central Hub

Ambit Energy, with a view to uplift its ethical standards, launched Compliance Central Hub to help distributors align themselves with the compliance and regulatory policies of the company and the legal requirements of the industry. The platform makes updated policy and regulatory documents readily available for its distributors.

Digital pop-up platform

Mary Kay launched Suite 13, a digital showroom for its products that presents users with a 360-degree 3D beauty experience. The creative and attractive digital tool is expected to help its independent beauty consultants manage their business easily and effectively.

Users will be led to virtual rooms to explore products, create wishlists and learn more about the company. Each virtual room is given specific names and visualizes various aspects of the company in visually appealing digital detail. Suite 13 is an initiative to personalize the customer experience in a digital ecosystem.

New digital experience

Medifast recently launched a mobile app for its direct selling company Optavia called the Optavia app. The digital tool, specifically designed for its clients, with access to their order history, autoship details, account information, Lean & Green recipes and more. The app is considered to be one of the first digital experience tools of the company. Revamping their customer strategies, Medifast expects to help its clients adopt healthier habits.

Cook, serve and party

Pampered Chef’s Table is a digital platform that connects its consultants and customers to host virtual cooking parties. The platform enables anyone to join the parties from any channel of their preference. Users can set content preferences, create their own content, and interact with the party hosts.

Table presents visitors with a virtual kitchen experience in an immersive way for consumers to learn about the company’s products and recipes. Consultants can share their content in the form of images, videos, product catalogs, recipes, interactive games, and quizzes to entice their audience.

Table was built to elevate the digital experience of its customers and its consultants in building fruitful social relationships.

Lifestyle framework platform

An online lifetime membership-based platform, Oola Life, is meant to empower its members with a customized goal-setting framework to track personal accountability and improve their living standards.

“It’s not just an e-learning platform; it’s not just a community; it’s not just a technology like an accountability app or a companion app. It’s all of these things in one platform,” says Troy Amdahl, one of the top executives at Oola.

More additions and revisions are underway. In November 2021, a standalone course called “The Green Gap” was introduced to help subscribers lead a debt-free life.

Industry regulations, mandates, and updates

Direct selling organizations need to stay up-to-date on the various regulations, mandates, and legal revisions put forth by the regulatory authorities every year. Organizations should constantly put their business and compensation plans to review to stay in line with the law of the land where it operates.

This year saw revisions and amendments to the former laws and regulations. Seminars and training sessions were conducted by the respective DSAs to educate its members and the community on the importance of the industry regulations and the like.

Direct Selling Journal

The Direct Selling Association announced the first release of its publication "The Direct Selling Journal" in January 2021. The journal lets industry leaders and academia discuss and address problems related to the channel.

The first issue featured more than 30 articles relevant to the industry dwellers that widely covered pandemic impact, events in 2020, and new trends in social media. The journal is expected to serve as an educational channel for revealing the opportunities and potential of the direct selling industry.

Legal and Regulatory Seminar

Direct Selling Association held its Legal and Regulatory Seminar virtually and in person on the 15-17th of October 2021. The event included United States Senator Mike Lee (R-UT), the Nevada Attorney General's office, former senior officials from the Federal Trade Commission, Acting Chair and Commissioner Maureen Ohlhausen, and Director, Bureau of Consumer Protection Andrew Smith.

The seminar included presentations and discussions by federal and state regulators on the functioning of the industry to protect consumers and businesses. The agenda included discussions on adopting legal updates and protective measures that need to be implemented by companies, the new "Business Opportunity Rule" set by FTC, leveraging technology to meet compliance goals, etc.

FTC Regulations and Updates

The Federal Trade Commission has made amendments to its existing policies. The new regulations will impact the direct selling industry with companies expected to maintain a strict code of conduct to avoid penalization in the future.

Notices of Penalty Offense

In conjunction with its statutory agency, Penalty Offense Authority, FTC sent letters to hundreds of network marketing companies citing that civil penalties of up to $43K per violation will be charged if the companies are found guilty on practices mandated by FTC as illegal. The MLM companies will have to face this new regulatory uncertainty in 2022 under the new strategy.

“This new strategy is problematic because it does not provide fair notice of alleged violations or due process before subjecting a company to significant civil penalties,” says Brent Kugler, Partner at Scheef & Stone, LLP.

The ROSCA Act

A major change in the Restore Online Shoppers Confidence (ROSCA) Act made by FTC in 2021 places restrictions on online sellers and the systems they employ for charging their consumers for products and services sold online in negative option programs.

Negative option programs include everything that a seller uses to make its customers into accepting anything that the seller offers without actual consumer consent. It includes prenotification negative option plans, continuity plans, automatic renewals, and free-to-pay conversion offers.

The Business of Opportunity Rule

In June 2021, the FTC set a review on its Business of Opportunity rule which is meant to help prospective buyers specific information about the business needed to evaluate the risks in a business opportunity.

The rule earlier had exempted multilevel marketers from the rule’s requirements. “There is no dispute that lying about earnings claims and other related practices is unlawful. By formally codifying these prohibitions into rules like the Business Opportunity Rule, the Commission can seek restitution and penalties against multilevel marketers, the gig economy platforms, and others who cheat workers and entrepreneurs through false earnings claims, without imposing any new obligations on honest businesses”, announced Rohit Chopra regarding the new amendment in FTC’s Business Opportunity Rule.

DSA on LuLaRich

DSA condemned the LuLaRich docuseries airing on Amazon Prime saying that LuLaRoe “is not and has never been a member of DSA”. The docuseries describes practices that are not approved by the Direct Selling Association Code of Ethics.

“The Amazon Prime Docuseries describes practices prohibited by the Direct Selling Association. Legitimate companies don’t require new salespeople to pay large upfront costs to get involved and should never require or even encourage salespeople to purchase large amounts of inventory they can’t reasonably expect to sell. These types of practices are clear warning signs that all consumers should be aware of when pursuing an independent contractor opportunity with a direct seller”, said Joseph N. Mariano, president of DSA.

Preserving Direct Seller Independence Act of 2021

DSA supported the re-introduction of the Preserving Direct Seller Independence Act of 2021 H.R. 5038 on the 13th of August 2021, introduced by Reps. Tim Walberg (R-MI) and Henry Cuellar (D-TX). The legislation would consider direct sellers as Independent Contractors under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) consistent with the Internal Revenue Service Code.

“The independent contractor status of direct sellers was vital to the 13.9% growth in the industry last year”, commented Joseph N. Mariano, President of the Direct Selling Association.

Consumer Protection (Direct Selling) Rules, 2021

The Indian government recently tightened the rules on money chains and pyramid schemes to conserve consumer rights in the country. The Consumer Protection (Direct Selling) Rules, 2021 came into effect on December 28, 2021. It prohibits the participation and/or promotion of pyramid schemes and money circulation schemes in India.

Sustainability efforts - To save and protect

The CSR initiatives of direct selling organizations in 2021 have seen new and fresh dimensions and have contributed immensely to the communities the world over. The companies have worked towards eradicating poverty, uplifting the environment, and affording the education of students who were in need.

Let’s look at some of the remarkable contributions made by direct selling organizations that have made a difference.

Natura &Co.

The sustainability efforts led by Natura &Co. highlighted the effects cosmetics production can have on the biodiversity of the planet. Earlier this year the company launched Dutch eco video streaming platform “WaterBear” to air the messages of sustainability and its commitments to the world outside through documentaries and short videos.

Natura &Co. has also joined hands with major brands as Henkel, L'Oréal, LVMH and Unilever to start a beauty consortium to improve the sustainability standards in the beauty industry. The company also made investments in protecting the Amazon biome. The company launched a monitoring tool, PlenaMata, in partnership with MapBiomas and InfoAmazonia to oversee the cause. The company in its Commitment to Life program has pledged to play its parts in serious and pressing environmental concerns around the world.

USANA

The USANA Kids Eat program won this years’ DSA Vision for Tomorrow Award. The program supports children and has distributed more than 15,000 backpacks and 110,000+ meals this year. The organization has also taken part in various environmental initiatives such as Utah’s Sustainable Business Coalition and One-Earth-One-Ocean in Frankfurt, Germany.

Nu Skin

Nu Skin, Japan participated in a food drive for single-parent households and aired a TV show on nutritional assistance and educational support. The company also encourages recycling and other sustainable practices. Nu Skin distributed 1,700 stationery kits to nursing homes in regions affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake.

Nu Skin Europe had its employees collectively walk, run, and cycle 5,000kms to raise funds for local charities. In Korea, Nu Skin employees partnered with the Korean Red Cross to give 300 low-income families gift boxes with needed sanitation and other medical supplies.

Arbonne

Flourish Arbonne foundation had been volunteering its services across the world to the needy. In recognition of its services Direct Sellers Association, Canada bestowed them with the "Making a Difference" award for the year 2021.

Optavia

The philanthropic initiative of Optavia, Healthy Habits For All®, donated $100,000 for non-profit organizations and for supporting children’s education and nutrition. The Optavia community has donated 8 million nutritious meals for children so far. The donations were made at the 2021 Annual Global Convention of Optavia held from July 29th to August 1st.

In its third annual Healthy Habits For All® from September 20-26, 2021, Optavia’s employee volunteers collected back-to-school bags containing water bottles, jump ropes, school supplies, a kid-friendly healthy recipe and additional materials for 250 city students. In partnership with No Kid Hungry® , Share Our Strength, Medifast and the OPTAVIA Community have raised over $900,000, which can help provide up to 9 million meals to kids in need.

Amway

Amway Japan was honored by the Office of the Prime Minister of Japan with the Medal with Dark Blue Ribbon for its contributions to the National Center for Global Health and Medicine (NCGM). Amway Japan had raised ¥10 million for NCGM to help fight COVID-19 in the country.

"Together We Can" campaign hosted by Amway Europe donated €1 million towards the COVID-19 crisis. Amway contributed $500,000 to a foundation headed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to support the COVID-19 Crisis in India. Amway India too partnered with local organizations to help meet the diverse needs of the prevalent pandemic situation.

Herbalife

The Herbalife Nutrition Foundation (HNF) donated $5 million in 2021 to benefit 167 Casa Herbalife Nutrition programs across 59 countries. The Casa Herbalife Nutrition Programs helped more than 200,000 people in matters of nutrition, meals, and other support. HNF also supports organizations such as World Food Program USA, Asociación Mexicana de Bancos de Alimentos (BAMX) and SOS Children’s Villages of Europe, Africa and India, to eradicate hunger.

Herbalife’s initiative, Nutrition for Zero Hunger (NFZH), is aligned with the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goal 2, which seeks to end hunger by 2030 and to achieve food security and improved nutrition. In its recent global sustainability report, it has reported that in coordination with HNF, it has donated more than $3.5 million since the launch of Herbalife's Nutrition for Zero Hunger.

The company has also awarded scholarships in partnership with the American Society for Nutrition (ASN) and Nutrition Education for the Public (NEP) for students interested in nutrition-based programs.

Tupperware

In 2021, Tupperware underwent a materiality assessment to identify areas that need to be addressed under its new environmental, social, and governance strategy. The company devised a 10-year plan to align with the United Nations sustainability goals 5, 6, 12, and 13.

The company commits to a 90% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.

SeneGence

The Make Sense Foundation, the philanthropic initiative of SeneGence, has done charitable contributions of over one million in 2021.

“Even as the world shut down, SeneGence strengthened our philanthropic support to hospitals and front-line workers, as well as to charities that benefit women and children with products, cash donations, and services. The SeneGence family, The Make Sense Foundation, and our amazing distributors are grateful to be in the position to give back,” said Joni Rogers-Kante, SeneGence CEO and Founder.

eXp Realty

In a joint initiative with New Story, a non-profit organization, eXp Realty has started its efforts to build 100 homes in the Morelos region of Mexico, where hundreds of people went homeless because of the devastating earthquake that struck the region in September 2017.

The employees of eXp Realty and its network of agents together with Glenn Sanford, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of eXp World Holdings have pledged to match up to $300,000 in contributions with a goal of raising $600,000.

Direct selling industry - The rise and fall

The unending lockdowns and the unexpected economic turns left the industry fluctuating. However, the net result is one of accomplishment. Reviewing the trading indexes against the broader markets, the direct selling industry in 2021 had a strong claim to make.

In a survey done on 80 direct selling companies, 45% of the companies had an increase in revenue in 2021 compared to the previous year whereas 10% experienced a flat growth. Another 45% saw a decline in growth compared to 2020.

The Stocks

The Transformation Capital Direct Selling Index (TDSI) increased by 18% during the month of January against a 2% loss for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA).

The month of February saw Direct Selling Capital Advisors Direct Selling Index (DSCI) formerly known as Transformation Capital Direct Selling Index (TDSI) increase by 3.1% and the DJIA had an increase of 3.2%.

The stocks suffered a major decline in March. The DSCI fell by 5.7% while the DJIA gained 6.6%. Compared to the same time last year, the industry has improved with a 77.8% increase in DSCI and 29.8% for the DJIA.

The DSCI shot up 3.1% in April 2021 when compared to the DJIA of 2.7%. In May and June, the DSCI rose 18.4% and 2.2% respectively as compared to the DJIA of 1.9% through both months.

After a consistent increase in growth, the DSCI fell by 7.4% in July underscoring the Dow Jones Industrial Average of 1.3% during the month. 12 out of the 17 stocks lost value in July except for LifeVantage, who nearly doubled their gains.

The month of August also saw a major decline marking it as the weakest monthly performance since March 1, 2020. Declining an 8.4%, DSCI marked a second drastic decline in 2021. The DJIA on the other hand rose by 1.9% in August.

In line with the declines, September also reported a 17.8% decline in DSCI compared to a sharp decline in the DJIA of -4.3%. After three months of consecutive decline, the DSCI rose to 10% outperforming the DJIA of 5.8% during the month of October.

Negating the result of the rise in October, the DSCI fell by 8.5% in November against a DJIA average which also saw a decline of -3.7%. The decline hit The Beach Body which lost half of what it gained in November. Towards the end of the year, the DCSI rose by 4.1% partially reversing the fall in November. The DJIA slightly exceeded the DSCI marking a 5.4% in growth in December.

Compiling the direct selling stocks for the whole of 2021, DSCI was around 30% with its peak in mid-2021. The DJIA for the year was 20.2%.

2021 in conclusion

We have before us a fresh new year to hope for. Many things have changed and many unchanged. Many new normals are here to stay. Customer-centricity will underline the success efforts in 2022 as important are the companies’ need to transform and advance digitally in all realms of their business. In an era when direct selling companies are moving through a twin transition of ‘green and digital’, understanding the new trends and applying new technologies are the strategic investments an organization should make.

While that is with technology, an unwavering human mindset and determination to get past the challenges will be an added investment to make in the year 2022.

Source/References: Direct Selling News, GlobeNewswire, DSA, WFDSA, The World of Direct Selling

Disclaimer: Epixel neither promotes nor supports any of the companies mentioned in this article nor their products or services. The facts published here are represented as reported in the direct selling industry. The facts don't reflect our priorities. The article was compiled based on available resources and does not represent special mentions or priorities to organizations, persons, or products.